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10 Frugal Holiday Tips to Keep You Out of Debt

How will your current debt load affect your holiday plans?

As we enter the holiday season, make a new tradition and skip the debt so you can enjoy less stress and more time with family. Here are 10 tips to get you through December on a budget.

  1. Make a spending plan. Write down all your upcoming expenses, including gifts, travel, entertainment, clothing and decorations. Come up with a realistic dollar amount and commit to sticking to it.
  2. Use an app to stay organized. Santa’s Bag allows you to see all the people you need to buy for, and exactly how much you’ve allotted to spend on each one.
  3. Look into your debt options. You don’t need to wait until after the holidays to deal with your debt load. The first step is to learn more about different solutions – here’s a simple explanation of debt relief options.
  4. Choose DIY gifts. Get crafty and creative by making simple, thoughtful gifts. Use this list for ideas from the blog, Simply Frugal.
  5. Manage kids’ expectations. Help children make realistic Santa lists or implement an idea from finance blogger Kerry Taylor – something your child wants, something they need, something they wear, something they read.
  6. Shop wisely. Avoid peak shopping times because you’ll be more likely to overspend when distracted and fighting the crowds. Take your list with you or shop online to find the best deals.
  7. Use cash whenever you can. Even if you’re shopping online, transfer what you need to your credit card before you buy, or directly after. If you’re headed to the mall, withdraw what you need in cash before you go.
  8. Save on food and entertainment. Don’t spend hundreds of dollars on a holiday feast. Instead, ask your loved ones to contribute by making it a potluck-style dinner.
  9. Do a Secret Santa exchange with family. Instead of buying for everyone, draw names from a hat so each person receives something. Remember to put a strict monetary limit on each gift.
  10. Spend more time than money. Start new traditions this year by taking time to play outdoors, look at Christmas lights or attend a church concert. Creating memories is what’s most important about the holidays.

Skip the debt this Christmas and implement some new, money-saving traditions with your family. For more money saving holiday tips, check out this blog post on Squawkfox from Kerry Taylor.

How to you plan to skip the debt this holiday season? Share your ideas by joining our Twitter conversation. #DebtSolutions #HolidayDebt



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